• Mauritius, Indian Ocean

The best time to visit the Indian Ocean

The best time to visit the Indian Ocean is completely dependant on your particular interest for visiting. Blessed with warm tropical climates throughout the year it is always a good time to visit, however when you decide to visit may vary depending on your particular interest or whether you wish to combine one of these idyllic island destinations with another stop off along the way!

The tropical, sun-soaked isles that make up this part of the world are great throughout most of the year, however maybe avoid the months of January and February. If you were planning travel at this time, then get in touch and we'll come up with a couple of suitable alternatives for you.

The Indian Ocean is made up of exotic islands that enjoy the benefits of the sun, sea, and generally more sun.


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summary of when to go by island

Please find below a quick summary of the best times to go to each of the Indian Ocean Islands. 


The Maldives have a tropical climate broken up by two seasons, or monsoons. The dry season (northeast monsoon) runs from January to March, and the wet season (southeast monsoon) runs from May to November, with April and December as changeover months. There is a greater influx of people during the drier months from December to April, which also leads to inflated prices that peak during Christmas, New Year and Easter. Rainfall is more likely from May to November, but tends to be in short afternoon bursts only and are unlikely to affect you holiday. With temperatures that average between 23ºC to 30ºC it makes it a good place to visit throughout the year. For surfers the best time to visit is March to October, and diving is excellent throughout the year. However as a general rule, from May to November there is more variety of marine life and better visibility on the western side of any atoll, December to April it is better on the east, which may have an impact on which accommodation you decide to choose.


Temperatures in the Seychelles are pretty warm throughout the year with the average temperature ranging from 24ºC to 31ºC. The weather on the islands is heavily influenced by the trade winds; warmer, wetter airstreams blow from the northwest from October to April, then from May to September slightly stronger and drier winds rush by, which is great for sailing but the seas can get choppy and protected beaches are the best place to be. December and January are by far the wettest months, but rainfall comes in short sharp bursts followed by the sun again. July and August sees the Seychelles at its driest. Hotel prices have a tendency to rise during the peak seasons of December to January and July to August and Easter time can also be busy. The best months for diving and snorkelling are April/May and October/November when water temperatures can reach 29ºC and visibility regularly reaches over 30 metres.


Located just 20 degrees south of the equator, this island of Mauritius boasts a typical tropical climate, and is generally considered as a year-round destination. Like the other tropical islands, it enjoys wet and dry seasons. The summer months are from December to April and the temperatures range between 25°C and 33°C on the coast. Summer can be stifling due to the extra humidity, but the southeast trade winds often take the edge off. The winter months are May to November and are cooler and drier. Although they rarely hit Mauritius, cyclones are prone to the area in January and February, and whilst they often happen at sea, it can mean persistent rain on the mainland. Those in search of water sports or diving should avoid these months. The wettest part of the island is the highlands inland where it can rain at any time. Something to also bear in mind is that it is a micro-climate meaning it could be raining where you are and 5 minutes way they are enjoying bright sunshine. People flock and prices rise during Christmas and New Year, and the month of August, but other than that there is no real high and low season.

North Island, Seychelles

Where to see wildlife in the Indian Ocean

Humpback WhalesReunion Island from June to October with August and September being optimum. 

Manta Rays and Whale Sharks: For hundreds of manta rays and whale sharks, head to Hanifaru Bay between June – October when the plankton levels peak, attracting large numbers of manta rays, whale sharks and other fish. 

Reef Sharks: In the northeast monsoon from end of December – May. The reef sharks gather near the channel entrances on the eastern side of the atolls. You can find them all year round but the north east monsoon has better visibility and calmer seas. 

Aldabra Giant TortoiseAldabra the “Galapagos of the Indian Ocean’ is best visited mid-October to December and end of February until April.

Turtles: You can see turtles throughout the year in various areas; hawksbill turtles nest between November and January on Cousin Island Special Reserve. 

Hammerhead Shark: December – April, head to the Ari Atoll of the Maldives. We recommend staying at the Constance Moofushi. 

Indian Ocean Monthly Overviews

Read more on the following pages:

North Island, Seychelles

The Best Times to go to the Indian Ocean if you want to experience...

Hiking Reunion Island: May to October is the best time to hike some of Reunion's 900kms of walking trails, from easy scenic walks to tackling challenging ramparts.

Swimming with Humpbacks: Our swimming with humpback whales safari departs in August, prime time for seeing the humpbacks in Reunion Island.

Snorkelling: There is snorkelling year round throughout the Indian Ocean.

Piton de la Fournaise: One of the world’s most active volcanoes with 5 spectacular eruptions in 2015, best visited March to December, outside of the rainier season.

Swimming with humpbacks in Reunion Island - Patrick Dykstra

Your Next Steps

View our Indian Ocean safaris, or talk to one of our specialists for more details on travelling to the Indian Ocean. Please note we recommend a budget of from £7,000 / $10,000 USD per person for our style of trip to this destination.